Beauty Insider Skin Barrier Repair

SKIN BARRIER REPAIR: The Top Secret to Achieve a Clear and Healthy Skin

SKIN BARRIER REPAIR: The Top Secret to Achieve a Clear and Healthy Skin

Original Author: Fira Syafiqah

Keep having breakout at the same spot? Tried many skincare products but none is effective? WHAT A WASTE!

Do you know that one of the reasons that causes this to happen is due to IMPAIRED SKIN BARRIER!? Impaired skin barrier is also one of the reasons why your acne keeps coming without an ending but fret not! Read until the end and you’ll know how to repair your damaged skin barrier and yes, ROAD TO CLEAR AND HEALTHY SKIN!

What is Skin Barrier?

The skin barrier is the outer surface of the skin including the stratum corneum (SC), the outermost layer of the epidermis. The stratum corneum is composed of skin cells, lipids, and natural moisturizing factors (NMF) like amino and fatty acids. It has a “brick and mortar” composition with skin cells as the “bricks” and lipids (or oils) forming the “mortar” which functions to move moisture between cells.

The main components of skin barrier includes:

  1. 50% Ceramide
  2. 25% Cholesterol
  3. 15% Fatty Acid
  4. Others include Natural Moisturizing Factor, Antioxidants
Other name for skin barrier is LIPID BARRIER or MOISTURE BARRIER.

Skin Barrier Functions

Since our skin is located at the outermost part of our body, it carries a lot of functions in protecting the internal organ from microorganisms by acting as first line of defense.

Other functions of skin barrier include:

  1. Protect skin from invasion of allergens and bacteria. Wound is an example of impaired skin barrier due to bacterial infection. 
  2. Reduce transepidermal water loss (TEWL). Remember that our skin needs moisture to function well. 
  3. Mitigate effects of oxidative stress / Fight free radical damage (antioxidant)

What is free radical? 

Free radical is an unstable atom that can cause damage to the skin by stealing electron from DNA especially from our skin. READ MORE ABOUT ANTIOXIDANT AND FREE RADICAL HERE

What a Healthy Skin Barrier Should Have?

A healthy skin barrier is everyone’s dream because it is the essential key for you to have an a healthy and glowing skin. Tell me, who doesn’t want that? A healthy skin is what makes you look confident to confront people every day!

A healthy skin barrier should:

  • Right amount of lipid. Our skin component is mostly made up of lipid. That is why it is also called as lipid barrier.
  • Retain moisture within skin. This is to limit amount of moisture from evaporating. Please remember, HYDRATION IS THE KEY!
  • Be resilient, yet flexible with the right collagen amount

Signs of Damaged Skin Barrier

How to know if you have an impaired or damaged skin barrier? These are the signs to look for!

  • Dry, dehydrated and flaky
  • Inflammation and redness
  • Itchiness
  • Acne flare-up
  • Tightness

Factors that Damage Skin Barrier

  • Stripping cleansers
  • Over-exfoliating
  • Using too many active ingredients
  • Fragrance (if you have sensitive skin)
  • Sun exposure
  • Stress
  • Pollution
  • Genetic
  • Extreme weather

Self Mechanism of Skin Barrier Repair

Do you know our skin barrier has its own self-mechanism to make sure our barrier can function at optimum level? These are some mechanisms found in a research paper on how our barrier repairs itself during damaged period.

  1. Immediate release of precursor lipid into stratum corneum (eg: Ceramide)
  2. When microbial enters the skin, antimicrobial peptides will be activated, providing immune response
  3. Increase conversion of prefilaggrin –> filaggrin –> Natural Moisturising Factor (NMF) 

NMF is the amino acid that helps to maintain moisture within the skin. (Eg: Hyaluronic Acid, Glycerin)

Skin Barrier Repairing

Before we focus on ingredients that can help to repair damaged skin barrier, we should change the way we treat our skin. Here are tips on how to take care of your skin barrier:

  1. Use mild and low pH cleanser. High pH (alkaline) will irritate your skin as our skin’s natural pH is acidic. Cleanse twice daily ONLY.
  2. Do not over exfoliate. Even a brand suggests that you should use the exfoliator every day, DO NOT FOLLOW! 2 to 3 times per week only. In the case of major breakout, forget exfoliator in a while.
  3. Don’t use TOO MANY active ingredients in one routine. Can opt to use them in different routine or in alternating days.
  4. Include ANTIOXIDANT in your routine to fight free radical damage on your skin. Some antioxidants include Vitamin A (Retinoid), Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide), Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid)  and Vitamin E (Tocopherol).
  5. Moisturize the skin to supply hydration and lipid for better performance of skin barrier.
  6. Apply sunscreen to prevent from UV ray damage and slow down skin’s aging.
  7. Avoid products which can irritate skin barrier (Eg: Concentrated essential oil)
Skin Barrier RestorationWater Retaining  IngredientSkin Soothing Ingredient
  • Ceramide
  • Niacinamide
  • Natural Moisturising Factor (NMF)
  • Fatty Acid
  • Squalane
  • Hyaluronic Acid
  • Glycerin
  • Panthenol
  • Sodium PCA
  • Honey
  • Aloe Vera
  • Centella Asiatica
  • Calendula extract
  • Green Tea extract
  • Niacinamide

Products Recommendation

Looking for products perfect for skin barrier repairing? Here are some products recommendation for you!

Products Name

 Repairing ingredients

Krave Beauty Skin Barrier Relief

  • NMF
  • Ceramide
  • Niacinamide

Cosrx  Centella Water Alcohol-Free Toner

  • Panthenol
  • Centella Asiatica
  • Hyaluronic Acid

The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2%  + B5

  • Hyaluronic Acid
  • Glycerin

Hadalabo Gokujyun Ultimate Moisturising Milk

  • Hyaluronic Acid

Somethinc Niacinamide + Moisture Beet Serum

  • Niacinamide
  • Glycerin

Nacific Real Floral Toner

  • Calendula extract
  • Centella Asiatica

The Ordinary Natural Moisturising Factors + HA

  • NMF
  • Glycerin
  • Hyaluronic Acid

Safi Dermasafe Soothe and Hydrate Day Moisturiser

  • Glycerin
  • Niacinamide
  • Hyaluronic Acid
  • Chamomile

ZarZou Repairing & Soothing Facial Serum


  • Niacinamide
  • Centella Asiatica
  • Rosehip Oil

Thank you for reading. We hope this entry will help you to achieve healthy and clear skin with the right skincare habits and products in your routine.


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